For the most part, I don’t do New Year’s Resolutions. They feel too much like rules to me and the world has quite enough of those, thank you very much. However, there is one thing I have challenged myself to do every year for some time now. Every year I fail, yet I look forward to trying again each January as I turn to a fresh page in my notebook.
It was several years ago that a friend and fellow blogger wrote about her goal of reading 52 books in a year. Prior to children I was a voracious reader, easily meeting that mark and then some. But as the duties of motherhood and homeschooling took precedence, finding the time to read had somehow taken backseat status. This challenge has proven to be just the thing to foster a deliberate mindset, to purposefully make time to enjoy stories, word artistry, and to simply learn new and interesting things.
This past year brought some amazing reads my way and, while I enjoyed each one, I whittled down my favorites to the top 10 which are marked in red. So without further rambling, here’s my list for 2017!
1.) When Mockingbirds Sing by Billy Coffey
2.) The Medicine Cabinet of Curiosities by Nickolas Bakalar
3.) Twilight by Stephenie Meyers
4.) Seven: The Deadly Sins and the Beatitudes by Jeff Cook
5.) The Forgotten Way by Ted Dekker (Read it twice this year.)
6.) The Ragamuffin Gospel by Brennan Manning
7.) The Walls Are Talking by Abby Johnson with Kristin Detrow (An amazing group of stories from former abortion clinic workers. Difficult to read at times, but it is well presented and quite thought provoking.)
8.) How To Toilet Train Your Cat: And 61 Other Ill-Conceived Projects by The Bathroom Readers Institute
9.) Without Conscience: The Disturbing World of Psychopaths Among Us by Robert D. Hare
10.) A Contrarian’s Guide To Knowing God by Larry Osborne
11.) Forgiven by Terri Roberts with Jeanette Windle (This is the story of the Amish school shooting several years ago, written by the mother of the shooter. Very powerful story!)
12.) Voice in the Night by Pastor Surprise with David Wimbish
13.) 8 Minutes in the Morning by Jorge Cruise
14.) Man’s Search for Meaning by Viktor E. Frankl (Viktor Frankl was a psychiatrist who was sent to the Nazi concentration camps. This is his story of how man finds meaning in even the most horrific of circumstances. This should be mandatory reading for all high school students!)
15.) As A Man Thinketh by James Allen
16.) The Fibro Manual by Ginerva Liptan, M.D. (If you or someone you know suffers from fibromyalgia, go out and buy this book now! This is filled with tons of current information on this perplexing disorder, written by a Doctor who suffers from it herself.)
17.) What If? Serious Scientific Answers to Absurd Hypothetical Questions by Randall Munroe
18.) Her Mother’s Hope: Marta’s Legacy by Francine Rivers
19.) The Essential Enneagram by David Daniels, M.D. And Virginia Price Ph.D.
20.) Are You Dreaming: Exploring Lucid Dreams, A Comprehensive Guide by Daniel Love
21.) Hind’s Feet on High Places by Hannah Hurnard
22.) Traces of Guilt by Dee Henderson
23.) Uninvited by Lysa TerKeurst
24.) House of Stairs by William Sleator (A childhood fave of mine. One of my first psychological thrillers. It’s reminiscent of Lord of the Flies.)
25.) The Outsiders by S.E. Hinton (Another old fave that was super fun to revisit.)
26.) Lies Homeschooling Moms Believe by Todd Wilson (Every homeschool mom needs to read this. In fact, every homeschool mom needs to read this every couple of years! This book has helped more mamas than I can count in their homeschool journey.)
27.) Psych 101: A Crash Course in the Science of the Mind by Paul Kleinman
28.) The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up by Marie Kondo
29.) Invitation to Solitude and Silence by Ruth Haley Barton
30.) Let the Elephants Run: Unlock Your Creativity and Change Everything by David Usher
31.) The War of Art by Steven Pressfield
32.) Mythology by Edith Hamilton
33.) The Christian Atheist by Craig Groeschel
34.) A Generation Chosen by Ben Courson
35.) Becoming Myself by Stasi Eldredge
36.) From Heaven by A.W. Tozer
1.) The One Who Sees Me by Kandi J Wyatt (A fresh take on an old biblical favorite, this is written by a local writer and friend of mine. I don’t want to give anything away, but this really helped me see that story in a new, more intimate way.)
2.) Centralia by Mike Dellosso
3.) Morgue: A Life in Death by Dr. Vincent Di Maio and Ron Franscell
4.) Coming Clean: A Memoir by Kimberly Rae Miller (If you love the show Hoarders, this is a must-read. Written by the daughter of hoarders, this is a fascinating perspective on this disorder.)
5.) My True Type: Clarifying Your Personality Type, Preferences and Functions by Dr. A.J. Drenth
So, while I have ‘failed’ the challenge once again, I nonetheless find myself excited to press on. Will I make it this year? I have no idea, but I already have a few amazing reads written on my list and a stack of books patiently waiting their turn. Some of them I’ll blaze through, but some will surely demand a slower pace, time to read and reread juicy passages, to highlight the bits of gold I don’t want to forget. I’m excited. And whether I make it to that elusive magic number or not, I’m quite certain I’ll enjoy trying!
Grace and peace,
Photo by karn684 at Bigstockphoto.